Can I get out of a simple battery ticket if she laid hands on me first, but I have no evidence except for markings?

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Can I get out of a simple battery ticket if she laid hands on me first, but I have no evidence except for markings?

I had a verbal altercation with a man claiming to be an owner of the bar I was
at. He called the cops and they told me I could go back inside because the
man was drunk and not an employee. When I went back inside I grabbed my
boyfriend and as we were walking to our car I saw the man and his girlfriend,
which is the bar owners daughter, and I said ‘screw you’ to him and kept
walking but his girlfriend and himself started running at me calling me a
heifer. She grabbed my arm I have pictures of the marks on my arm and
when I turned around she got face to face with me and shoved me so I swung
at her and hit her multiple times in the face. Her boyfriend then intervened by
grabbing me and then ripped my shirt completely in half I still have the shirt
leaving me exposed. I was given a ticket for Simple Battery. Is there any way
to prove that I was not the one who started the fight so I can get this charge
dropped?

Asked on February 25, 2018 under Criminal Law, Louisiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

The problem you have is that you "hit her multiple times in the face." There is no such defense as "she started the fight"--you can be charged with battery even if thae other person "started" the fight. Self defense is a defense, but self defense is not retaliation; it is an act to stop an ongoing or occuring attack. Once the attack is over, the right to use force is over, too. If she shoved you once but you then hit her multiple times, you were not defending yourself from an ongoing or imminent threat: you were retaliating against someone who shoved you, and that is NOT self defense. It does not appear, based on what you write, you have a valid defense.


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